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Chinese companies face worries in quest for Indonesian nickel

Risks rise for reliance on mercurial exporter, which holds 24% of global reserves

Nickel being mined in Indonesia. The metal, which China severely lacks, is widely used to make lithium batteries -- the power source behind electric vehicles.   © Reuters

Morowali, an Indonesian county with fewer than 200,000 residents, has attracted billions of dollars in investment from Chinese companies.

The list of Chinese investors includes battery materials producers Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt, Eve Energy and Guangdong Brunp Recycling Technology. In 2021 alone, they put nearly $4 billion into the county.

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